European Journal of Epidemiology

, Volume 19, Issue 11, pp 1055–1059

Association of influenza epidemics with global climate variability

  • Cecile Viboud
  • Khashayar Pakdaman
  • Pierre-yves Boëlle
  • Mark L. Wilson
  • Monica F. Myers
  • Alain-Jacques Valleron
  • Antoine Flahault


The reasons for the seasonality and annual changes in the impact of influenza epidemics remain poorly understood. We investigated the covariations between a major component of climate, namely the El Niño Southern Oscillation (ENSO), and indicators of the impact of influenza, as measured by morbidity, excess mortality and viral subtypes collected in France during the period 1971–2002. We show that both the circulating subtype and the magnitude of ENSO are associated with the impact of influenza epidemics. Recognition of this association could lead to better understanding of the mechanisms of emergence of influenza epidemics.

ENSO – el ninõ southern oscillation ILI – influenza-like-illnesses M – million MEI – multivariate el ninõ southern oscillation index P&I – pneumonia and influenza 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cecile Viboud
    • 1
    • 2
  • Khashayar Pakdaman
    • 1
  • Pierre-yves Boëlle
    • 1
  • Mark L. Wilson
    • 3
  • Monica F. Myers
    • 4
  • Alain-Jacques Valleron
    • 1
  • Antoine Flahault
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut National de la Santè et de la Recherche Mèdicale, Unit 444, Epidemiology and Information SciencesCentre Hospitalo-UniversitaireSaint-AntoineUSA
  2. 2.WHO Collaborating Center for electronic disease surveillance, 27 rue ChalignyParis cedex 12France(
  3. 3.Department of EpidemiologyUniversity of MichiganUSA
  4. 4.Human Health Initiative, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Code 902, Greenbelt, MDUSA

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